I received this signed
"You are one of the first to put forth the time
and effort to communicate to most CRC pastors via email. I
hope you realize what an awesome responsibility you have taken
upon yourself in light of being one of the first ones out
of the blocks. I hope also that you have given sufficient
thought to how you will one day give account to God for all
that you are so aggressively promoting to CRC pastors."
This is a forthright, well-written, thoughtful warning. It
is not something I can lightly dismiss (James 3:1). Other faithful
friends have also mentioned this to me.
A Two-sided Coin
is a two-sided coin for me. I came across this insight by Dr. Charles
Hodge based on Rom. 5:18: "All the descendants of Adam, except
those of whom it is expressly revealed that they cannot inherit the
kingdom of God, are saved" (Systematic Theology, Vol.
I, P. 26). This initiated nearly 17 years of intensive, prayerful,
review of all the so-called "univeralistic" passages of
Scripture (See Posting # 1) before permitting Eerdmans to publish
my first book.
The decision to make my
conclusions public was not made recklessly. In addition to collaborating
with a colleague about each chapter as it was produced, I sent a copy
of the completed manuscript to 64 pastors and professors before permitting
Eerdmans to publish my first book. Only one hinted that I might be
in conflict with the creeds. Later formal charges were leveled against
me. Classis concluded that the charges were not substantiated and
Synod 1985 sustained the decision of Classis (See Posting 24, The 1985 Heresy Trial).
I consider it to be providential
that in the very same month (June 1980) that my first book appeared,
Synod sent a three-year study report "to the churches for elucidation
of the teaching of the Canons on election and reprobation."
This elucidation (Report 30) reached the identical conclusion I came
to, namely, that no one will suffer eternal death (be reprobate) solely on the basis of their original sin in Adam" ( Posting # 11 Evangelical Inclusivism in the CRC).
So, on the one hand I am accountable for what I am "promoting
to CRC pastors." On the other hand, I must consider that
if God was leading me to understand his truth I will be accountable
if I do not do what I can to help others understand
what God is saying in his word.
to Frequently Asked Questions
Neal Punt at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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